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Old 01-08-2009, 10:44 PM   #1
JR Greenhorn OP
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Joined: Aug 2008
Location: Litchfield, MN
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Off-Road Boot Recommendations for Big, Narrow Feet

I am planning to buy a pair of off-road riding boots before spring, and I have a number of issues complicating my decision.

First, I have uncommonly-sized feet. I wear a 13-14 boot in a B-width. It's been a while, but I think the last time my feet were measured on a Brannock Device, they were 13 for the ball-heel measurement and AA width. Unsurprisingly, I also have high arches, and would like those supported as well.

In addition, I require a lot of ankle support, as my feet/ankles/lower legs are severely weakened due to a spinal injury. My weakened legs mean I also cannot tolerate much excess weight in my boots, either. I have tried a handful of AFOs over the years, from bulky white plastic ones to slim carbon fibre ones. However, nothing comes close to the boots I currently wear.

Presently, I live in a pair of White's 10" Smoke Jumpers. A better workboot-type boot is not made. The White's make my previous pair of Danner's feel like discount-store boots. I've been off-road riding in my White's since I got them, and they do give surprisingly good support there as well, for a non-riding boot. However, they still lack the extreme support and crash protection of true riding boots.

My problem, then, is finding an off-road riding boot that can give me the protection and functionality that you buy a riding boot for, while also coming as close as possible in fit and support to my White's.

I had very high hopes for the Sidi Crossfire-TA boots, as I had heard of Sidi's reputation for light weight and a narrow fit. However, I haven't found Sidi Crossfire's listed at any size larger than 13. Does anyone know if that's as big as they make them?

I've seen that Alpinestars Tech 8s and Tech 10s come in sizes up to 15, but they don't seem to specify widths. I cannot suffer something built to a standard D-width. Also, the Alpinestars seem to have a reputation of being heavier than necessary, especially compared to Sidis.

I've looked at Gaerne's a bit as well, but the only boot model I've seen that comes larger than size 13 are the Fastback's. However, the pricing on the Fastback's would suggest that they aren't in the same league as the other boots I've been looking at. Too bad the SG-12's don't appear to come larger than 13. Are the Gaerne's as heavy as the seem like they would be?

I do plan to head to Bob's Cycle Supply in St. Paul and try on a few of these boots, but before I head in ready to compromise and buy, I wanted to see if there is anything else out there I should be considering given my size and needs?

Does anyone know if these or any other similar boots can be special ordered in specific sizes and widths? Is there anyone out there doing custom riding boot work that could potentially offer me a solution? Any other advice or recommendations anyone can offer?
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